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Oil Tank, please advise

October Home
October Home Member Posts: 75
The other day I saw an oil tank where the fuel supply to the boiler was coming from the TOP of the oiltank.

Why? What happened to gravity? Please help.

always learning, always humble, Arlene

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  • Frank_17
    Frank_17 Member Posts: 107
    oil line

    the pump that you have will suck the oilthrough the oil line. the line terminates in the tank probable 4" from the bottom. the fittings have to be leak free so as not to get air bound. common practice for many around here. Not me , though. dispite what the pump manufacterers say, the pumps don't last as long, I've hade to change many more pumps with overhead lines than not. It probably doesn't have a filter does it?
  • October Home
    October Home Member Posts: 75
    Yes, there's a filter

    Thanks for your answer. It's the first one I'd seen. Brand new construction. Skinny oil line. So? Why do it? Is there any advantage to it? Why use a pump when gravity will do?


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  • Rookie_3
    Rookie_3 Member Posts: 244

    Your talking about gravity feed as in kerosene burners or lamps. There will be a pump even if the oil line is coming
    from the bottom of the tank. (pump for atomization)
  • Pinball
    Pinball Member Posts: 249

    First of all a top line feed is very common in the Hudson Valley.Especially on older fuel tanks that have experienced a sludge problem in the past. It is a temporary fix until the owner can replace the tank. The fuel line is lifted off the bottom of the tank to get it out of the sludge.Thereby reducing the number of plugged nozzles, filters, & strainers.However, on a new installation, the tank should be slightly pitched to the bottom tank valve. This will help keep sludge from building up in the first place, by filtering the fuel from the very bottom of the tank where the sludge accumulates.
    Also if the oil burner is located lower than the fuel level, it will still be a "gravity feed" to the pump. It's called a siphon. If you don't believe me, Try to disconect the fuel line, without shutting off the fire-matic valve. You will have a mess on the floor that you can't stop!DON'T REALLY TRY IT. TRUST ME!
    If the fuel tank or level of oil is lower than the burner you will also see out there,Two oil lines from the top. (one feed and one return)This helps eliminate air problems to the burner.
    If you want contact me and I will show you several examples of this.(I live in your area)
  • DaveC
    DaveC Member Posts: 201
    Could be a \"snorkel\"...

    Another solution to the sludge at the bottom of the tank is a suction line attached to float, so that the oil is drawn from the just below the top level. The line is flexible rubber inside the tank. I've found problems with this, too - the line can fall off or deteriorate over time, or stick up over the oil level if not mounted right. Another possibility?
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